Over the weekend, Affliction quietly confirmed a few of the rumors regarding their second show. Hopefully, we can put another Affliction rumor to bed today. It all started when Affliction VP Tom Atencio stated they would be asking their fighters to work with them on their salaries to help ensure Affliction could survive. Dave Meltzer then reported that Affliction would be asking its fighters to take a 50% cut in pay on future shows in exchange for an easier opponent. Josh Barnett, a “good friend” of Affliction VP Tom Atencio, refuted that report when he said Affliction would not be asking any of their existing fighters to take a pay cut.
When ESPNRadio1100 contacted Meltzer he stood by the story and gave further clarification. It sounds like Barnett is defending Affliction but hasn’t been told the entire story by management.
Meltzer said that Atencio told him that fighters needed to work with Affliction on salary issues or they weren’t going to last much longer. Meltzer also said an agent that he spoke with did confirm that Affliction requested a 50% paycut with one of his fighters but that was only in cases where the fighter was going to face an easier opponent. Easier opponent? Who determines what an easy opponent is? Bottomline, Affliction has asked fighters to take paycuts in certain situations according to Meltzer.
As with most conflicting stories, the truth is usually found somewhere in the middle. We’ll know for sure what that truth is in the days following October 11 when the NSAC releases the fighter salaries, but this is likely what’s going on.